The St. Clare Girls’ Centre is located on the eastern slope of Mt. Kenya, 200 kilometers north of Nairobi and a mile above sea level. Because there are no supermarkets or “Home Depot” type stores all food and building materials are carried by truck from the port city of Mombasa to Nairobi which is a 10 hour trip over difficult roads. In Nairobi the materials are reloaded onto smaller trucks which make the arduous six hour climb up the mountain to the St. Clare.
Due to the difficulty of the roads and the exorbitant price of fuel the cost of the materials and food increases with each mile of transportation. It is not unusual for an item to double or triple in price from the time it leaves the boat in Mombasa to the time it is delivered at St. Clare.
Kenya has been held in the deadly grip of a seven year drought and the little food available is very costly. The Kenyan government and international aid is attempting to assist but the 400,000 Somali people fleeing the violence and conflict in their country and taking refuge in the border refugee camps in Kenya are absorbing this aid.